Do you want to install an access ramp in your building? Requirements and where to go

Access ramps are fundamental architectural elements for people with disabilities or older people who have lost much of their mobility and must do so in a wheelchair. Although all buildings have been adapted for the accessibility of these groups for years, it is no less true that there is still a lot of work to be done regarding access to old buildings, where architectural barriers prevent, on many occasions, the entry and exit of these groups from the buildings.

The administration establishes a series of parameters on which to request the construction of one of these ramps, and here we explain what assumptions it contemplates, how to do it and where to go.

Requirements to request it

The Law establishes a series of norms that some of the building’s tenants must comply with in order to be granted permission to build a ramp that eliminates these barriers. Between these conditions, and as we can see in the Horizontal Property Law published in the Official State Gazette, it is that the construction of an access ramp to the community portal It will be mandatory and will not require prior agreement from the neighborhood council if disabled people or people over 70 live in the building.

In this case, the amount of the works will be borne by all owners if the total does not exceed twelve monthly payments of ordinary expenses, discounting the subsidies or public aid that were granted. If the budget for the works exceeds that amount, they will also be mandatory for the community, but in that case the owner who had requested the construction of the ramp must take care of the difference.

However, if the majority of the owners, who also represent most participation fees, accepts the work, the community of owners will be obliged to pay in full for the work without the limit of twelve monthly payments that we have discussed before.

Person in a wheelchair down an access ramp

How to proceed

When one of the inhabitants of the building meets the requirements for the ramp to be installed, or even if a community of neighbors wishes to install it by mutual agreement without entailing a need, they must also meet a series of standards. But before proceeding with its construction, first of all you have to make sure there is a sufficiently large space so that its construction does not obstruct other accesses.

Then, the community must hire a surveyor or architect In order to calculate the structure that the ramp will have to support and make an assessment of other important aspects such as, for example, if it is necessary to modify something in the structure of the portal slab or the garages and basements that may be below. The Technical building Code establishes a series of rules that all ramps must comply with.

  • Ramps with a slope greater than 12% are not allowed. On the ramps that belong to accessible routes, the slope cannot be greater than 10% when their length is less than 3 meters or greater than 8% when the length is less than 6 meters. In other words, with a ramp section, only a maximum of five steps of normal dimensions could be covered. On the other hand, if the ramp is curved, the maximum longitudinal slope has to be measured on the most unfavorable side.
  • There must be a minimum space of 1.20 meters long before and after the ramp, and also on the landings between sections of ramps.
  • It must have a minimum width of 80 centimeters, also on the landings between sections of ramps.
  • It will be mandatory to place a handrail on both sides, including the plateau, on ramps with slopes greater than 6% that save a height of more than 18.5 centimeters. On ramps with slopes greater than 6% and a height difference of 5.5 centimeters, it will be mandatory to place a handrail only on one side.
  • The flooring must be non-slip.
Building access ramp

Where to apply for the grants

It is important to know that there are public aid for the disabled and people over 70 years of age when facing the construction of an access ramp to their home. To process these grants, although the regulations are state, those interested should contact the town councils of their localities, from where they will inform and manage possible aid of a public nature around the construction of the ramp.

Likewise, if a person with a disability or over 70 years of age requests its construction, even if they have the votes against the majority of the community of neighbors, they should also go to the city council so that it can do it. comply with the Horizontal Property Law, which in this case would oblige the community to build the ramp and bear part of the expenses, regardless of the public aid they may receive for its construction.